Sonoma County Gazette, July 2009

Basin Plan Amendment

By Brenda Adelman

As flows in the Russian River are being reduced to a dribble this summer, the North Coast Regional Board, normally in charge of water quality, is going to change the Basin Plan to accommodate summer discharges of treated wastewater, now redefined as “non-storm water discharge”.

Regional Board legalizing wastewater irrigation runoff…..
Until now, summer irrigation runoff has been illegal, even though it happens frequently.  This Amendment is motivated by pressure from the State Water Board to encourage irrigated wastewater reuse in order to stretch the water supply.  The problem is that this waste is not as safe as regulators say it is.